If you're an IBN member or have followed this blog for a while, you know that I am a big fan of online newsletters. I have published one almost weekly for 13 years. It's the single most effective marketing tool on the planet, and it's one of the things I like most about being in business. When I work with clients and members to help them launch and manage an effective newsletter, one of the first questions they ask is, “What's the best day to publish my newsletter?”
This is a logical question, and the answer is, it depends. Here are some of the pros and cons of publishing an email newsletter on different days of the week:
Saturday and Sunday
* You have more time open to finalize and proof before publishing
* People have more time to read your publication on weekends
* They are slow inbox days so people are not overwhelmed by other email
* It's the time of the week when lots of people proactively devote time to reading
* If your publication is more personal and “high touch,” it may be more well received on the weekend
* Proofing and editing could cut into your personal and family time on the weekend
* People may make it a rule not to check email on weekends
* If you need tech support for your publication, you may be out of luck on the weekend (ask me how I know about this one!)
Monday and Tuesday
* You had the weekend to make some good food, so you can easily share pictures and recipes
* You have a great time at the market, and you can share pictures from your shows
* People are overwhelmed with email on Monday, and don't want to see another email
* People must prioritize work for the entire week on Monday, so you're email may be the last to be read
* You might be overwhelmed with new-week work, and may find it difficult to publish
Wednesday and Thursday
* It's the middle of the week, and everyone is in “bring it” mode
* You had the early part of the week to launch new products, so there's more to write about
* People are looking forward to the weekend (especially on Thursday), and may be more likely to open and read your publication
* So much is going on in the middle of the week that your publication will get lost in the shuffle
* It's the last big marketing related activity you have to do for two days … Yay!
* You get to put if off all week and tend to other things
* When things wind down a bit on Friday afternoon, you have time to finish everything up
* The last thing people want to do on a Friday is read an online newsletter
I Publish On Sundays
When I first started my business in 2000, I published my weekly newsletter on Sundays because that was easiest for me. Back in “those days,” hardly anyone was publishing a newsletter so I had no one to look to for advice. I just did what fit my schedule best.
After my children were born, I switched to a Monday publication. Part of the reason is because I read a credible study saying that the open rates were better on Mondays. The other reason is because I wanted to invest the full weekend in my babies.
Later, I switched to Thursdays. Part of the reason is because I read a credible study saying that the open rates were better at the end of the work week. (Are you noticing a pattern here?) The other reason is because Monday's were too busy for me to include newsletter publishing. Thursday publishing worked well for many years.
A few weeks ago, I switched back to Sundays for a few reasons. First, now that my children are older, it's the best day for me personally. Additionally, my IBN member Success Calls usually take place on Tuesdays, and a Sunday publication makes for a good reminder, two days before the event.
The other reason I like Sundays is because the nature of my newsletter is evolving to embrace business and lifestyle from a more personal perspective. It's almost like a Sunday afternoon chat. I share from my heart about things that affect us as women (and some men) who are managing a business and a family (whether with pets or people, or both!). Our lives are constantly evolving, and Sunday is a good time to grab your favorite hot beverage, put your feet up and chat with me.
I'll be doing some split testing in early 2013 to see whether a Thursday or a Sunday newsletter experience higher open rates and click throughs, and to see if sales increase more with one than the other. I'll let you know what I find out. Meanwhile, I hope you'll subscribe and get some super business advice and a more personal perspective from me.
If you'd like to have a look before subscribing, here is this week's issue. I hope you enjoy the intimate approach I take. I have always found that personal is best.
You can subscribe here if you like that sort of thing.
I’d love to meet you there on Sundays!
A Note About Open Rates
I used to try to select a publication date based on how quickly after publication my readers opened my newsletter, or on the days when I get the highest open rates. This always seems like a crap shoot to me. I noticed very little correlation between when I published and when people opened the publication. Some people seem to open a publication right after they receive it while others take a few days to click.
I have not discovered a real pattern. If you haven't either, don't let that bother you.
Regardless of the Day, Just Do It!
While all this stuff about open rates and best publication dates is interesting, my advice where newsletters are concerned is to just get into the groove of publishing one. You'll find some tips here and here.
Just pick a day that works for you and get your news out there. You can always change to another day, as I have done over the years.
On what day of the week do you publish your newsletter? Why?